Many renters mistakenly believe that they don’t need renter’s insurance or view it as an expensive luxury. However, insurance needs aren’t negated just because one happens to be renting their home.
For those not familiar with renter’s insurance, it’s an insurance coverage that protects the renter from property losses from damages like water and fire. It also provides protection for liability risks, such as lawsuits brought by the landlord of the property, pet attacks, falls and slips, and guest accidents. This type of coverage is available in most areas and has an average $20 monthly premium rate for around $500,000 dollars worth of liability coverage and $20,000 dollars worth of property coverage.
Trusted Choice, a network of financial and insurance service firms, recently found in a survey that almost 25 million American home renters didn’t have any insurance coverage to protect themselves from losses and that most renters have limited, if any, knowledge of renter’s insurance.
Eight percent of the respondents without renter’s insurance had never heard about renter’s insurance before. Meanwhile, 17% said they weren’t aware that they needed renter’s insurance and 26% percent felt that renter’s insurance was too costly.
According to the study, some renters also mistakenly believed that their insurance needs were covered under the insurance policy held by their landlord. In reality, landlords don’t typically insure anything other than the building and infrastructural elements like HVAC systems and elevators. Other losses incurred will be directly on the renter’s shoulders. Even negligent actions caused by one tenant, such as a fire, that affects other innocent tenants in the building aren’t typically covered by the landlord’s insurance.
Other key findings of the study included:
* Fifty percent of the surveyed renters owned pets. Thirty-two percent of the non-pet owners had renter’s insurance. Although renters that own pets have a higher liability exposure than renters without pets, a mere 26% of the pet owners had renter’s insurance.
* Eighty-nine percent of the surveyed renters owned at least one expensive electronic device, such as a computer, camera, digital recorder, or home theater system. This group was more likely to have a renter’s insurance policy than those that didn’t own such devices.
* Fifty-three percent of the surveyed renters owned at least one form of exercise or sports equipment, such as a skis, bicycles, or a home gym system. This group was more likely to own renter’s insurance than those that didn’t own such equipment.
* Only thirty-one percent of the renters operating a home business from their apartment, condo, or other type of rental unit had renter’s insurance.